Re: Egyptological Transliteration Characters

From: Peter Kirk (
Date: Fri Oct 22 2004 - 11:49:48 CST

  • Next message: Michael Everson: "Re: Egyptological Transliteration Characters"

    On 22/10/2004 03:29, Michael Everson wrote:

    > At 17:49 -0400 2004-10-21, Dean Snyder wrote:
    >>> Which is what I use (dating back from Unicode 3.0, where it was
    >>> specifically annotated). (I know authors who use superscript c as
    >>> well.)
    >> I personally agree with your choice - if I had to pick one Unicode
    >> character to designate as transliterated ayin I would choose left half
    >> ring. And in that case, I would recommend encoding:
    > Wrong Thing To Do.
    > The Right Thing To Do is to investigate the history of these
    > characters, compare them to what is in use and what is encoded, and to
    > make recommendations accordingly. I am giving this as much attention
    > as I can given the constraints which are upon me.

    Now that I am back home I have had time to look at, and I am reminded of a
    point which I think I made before about this proposal:

    All of the examples of Egyptological ayin given in this PDF are in
    italic text. Thus the reference glyph which Michael has given is in fact
    based on an italic form. Now this italic form looks very like an italic
    (i.e. basically slanted) form of U+02BD MODIFIER LETTER REVERSED COMMA.
    So, would an Egyptological ayin in non-italic text look just like a
    reversed comma? (Part of the problem seems to be that Egyptian text
    generally seems to be set in italic.) Are these in fact the same character?

    This is part of the history of these characters which needs to be
    investigated. Did the typesetters in fact start by taking an italic
    version of the Greek rough breathing character and reuse it for
    Egyptian? It is clear that the typesetters of Gardiner's book made a
    greater distinction, as can be seen by comparison with the two examples
    of Greek smooth breathing (which should be a reversed form of rough
    breathing) in the samples from Gardiner's book. But is this a one off
    distinction in a single publication, or is it really significant enough
    to require a separate character?

    This point of course does not deal with the casing issue.

    Peter Kirk (personal) (work)

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